St. Vincent: Strange Mercy

Stand-out follow-up with great instrumentation.

I would listen to these tracks as simple instrumentals, and that is to say absolutely nothing against Annie Clark’s magnificent voice. All I am saying is that these songs are strong enough to captivate me, even without her vocals soaring and dancing about. Clark, along with some rather talented (multi-)instrumentalists (Bobby Sparks, MacKenzie Smith, Daniel Hart, Brian LeBarton, Evan Smith, and Phil Palazzolo), crafted an innovative, involving, and powerful album that has the strength to stand out in the long (and short) run.
Track-by-track review below.
Reviewed by: Alex Applegate
FCC warning: None.
Label: 4AD

1.     Familiar ghostly vocals, strangled guitar riffs, sick finale

2.     Upbeat pop drumming, stifling lyrics, gnarly shredding, crescendoing synths, building a frenzy

3.     Synths that would sound at home on a Black Moth Super Rainbow album, more controlled chaos, power surges

4.     Interesting instrumentation, sweet strings, playful guitar fills, MOOG

5.     Perhaps this is the sound of the Aurora Borealis

6.     Catharsis, contemplation, and confidence

7.     Shimmering synths take this track up a level

8.     Resolute acceptance, maturely minimal beginnings

9.     Simple, but effective drums provide pleasing background to some killer guitar work

10.   Cool composition, about as lo-fi as this album gets

11.   Bright arrangement, heavy synths and guitars, heavenly and airy sounds

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One Response to “St. Vincent: Strange Mercy”
  1. “Strange Mercy is most definitely Annie Clark’s best work yet as it projects an artist who has clearly grown comfortable in her own skin (and alter ego).”
    – indiepopnation.com

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